AP PHOTOS: Christmas celebrated near and far
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AP PHOTOS: Christmas celebrated near and far

Around the world, the holidays are in full swing. There are Christmas lights in Hong Kong, midnight Mass in Bethlehem and even Santa distributing sweets in India.

Pope Francis ushered in his first Christmas as pontiff with a sermon drawing on the theme of humility as he cited Jesus’ humble beginnings as a poor and vulnerable baby. Thousands gathered at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem to hear midnight Mass near the site of Jesus’ birth.

Here’s a gallery of images from Christmas celebrations around the world.



A man dressed as Santa Claus distributes sweets to children on the occasion of Christmas outside a church in Gauhati, India, Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013. Although Christians comprise only two percent of the population among a Hindu majority, the holiday is observed across the country as an occasion to celebrate. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)


Pakistani Christians attend Christmas mass in Peshawar, Pakistan, Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013. Christians are a minority in Pakistan, they constitute about 1.6% of Pakistan’s population. (AP Photo/Mohammad Sajjad)


Typhoon survivor child's line up for receive a give from donation during Christmas at a devastated area in Tacloban, Philippines, Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013. Typhoon Haiyan in Nov 8 the most powerful typhoon to make a landfall on record, left a wide swath of destruction and killed more than 6,000 people in central Philippines.(AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim)


More than 1,000 volunteers clad in Santa Claus costumes throw their hats in the air as they gather to deliver gifts for the poor in downtown Seoul, South Korea, Tuesday, Dec. 24, 2013. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)


Myanmar Christians pray at Saint Marry Cathedral during the Christmas Mass in Yangon, Myanmar Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013. (AP Photo/Khin Maung Win)


A couple look at the illuminated decoration to celebrate the festival season during Christmas eve in Hong Kong,Tuesday, Dec. 24, 2013. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)